RCS Sport says Yellow Fluo team hasn’t been ruled out of Giro d’Italia participation
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Thursday, November 28, 2013

RCS Sport says Yellow Fluo team hasn’t been ruled out of Giro d’Italia participation

by Shane Stokes at 11:06 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Giro d'Italia
 
Eight teams named yesterday are not necessarily the final list of contenders

Giro dAlthough the Yellow Fluo squad was omitted from the longlist of eight teams described yesterday as being in the running for a wildcard place in the Giro d’Italia, race organiser RCS Sport has clarified today that it could yet be considered for a place.

“What came out yesterday is just something about the teams that have applied until this point, returning the forms that RCS Sport has sent out to all the teams,” said RCS spokesman Matteo Cavazzuti to VeloNation. “The closing date is actually December 18th, so it is possible that Yellow Fluo and other teams will reply in the next few days.”

Yellow Fluo is the name of the relaunched Vini Fantini-Selle Italia squad, which had two high profile doping cases in this year’s race.

Former Giro winner Danilo di Luca was ejected after it emerged that he had tested positive for EPO in a pre-race test. After the event finished it was announced that stage fourteen winner Mauro Santambrogio had a positive A test for EPO in a random control taken on the opening day of the race.

In September the Italian media reported that Santambrogio’s B sample had tested negative, meaning that the rider might go unsanctioned.

The team lost its previous backing but has been relaunched under the temporary Yellow Fluo title. It has made pledges of public clarity and internal anti-doping controls, saying that it will ensure greater transparency.

The eight teams mentioned yesterday by RCS Sport as being in the running for selection are the Bardiani Valvole-CSF Inox, Caja Rural-RGA, Team Colombia, IAM Cycling, MTN-Qhubeka, Team NetApp-Endura, Team Novo Nordisk and UnitedHealtcare Pro Cycling teams.

The Yellow Fluo team’s absence from yesterday’s list gave the impression that the team had possibly been penalised for what happened in this year’s event. However Cavazzuti said that this was not the case.

“The team still has three weeks to apply, so it’s definitely not the case that it has been blocked,” he said.

Last year the decision about which teams would take part was made prior to the start of the season, with Bardiani-CSF Inox, Vini Fantini-Selle Italia and Team Colombia being announced as selected on January 8th.

Androni Giocattoli had earlier been given the automatic right to participate as it was the winner of the Coppa Italia 2012, a team ranking competition. It also won the same award this year, and so will again get one of the invites.

Cavazzuti confirmed that the decision will be made early again in 2014. “It will be made in early January, the same as last year,” he stated.

This means that teams won’t have the opportunity – or the requirement - to try to prove their worth via early season results.

“The reason is that RCS Sport wants to give the selected teams the best possible chance to get ready for the race,” he explained.

Acquarone faces further wait in RCS audit:

VeloNation also asked him about the situation with Michele Acquarone, the Giro d’Italia chief who was sidelined from his position in early October.

He and former CEO Giacomo Catano were handed the suspensions – which were described as precautionary rather than disciplinary – by RCS Sport after a possible misappropriation of thirteen million euro was detected.

An audit has been looking into transactions linked to RCS Sport in order to try to determine what has happened and who is responsible.

Acquarone issued a statement in October saying he is confident that he will be cleared.

“For the ties linking me to Giro fans and to the people involved in the industry, I want to strongly reassure everyone of my non-involvement in the matters that have been reported in the mass media over the last few days” he wrote then.

“Today the life of a company is permanently marked in time, and I am certain that all the facts will soon be completely clarified. I only dream about the day I can return to my team, and get back to working towards the 2014 Giro d’Italia, with even greater enthusiasm than that which has driven me over these years.”

Since then he’s expressed frustration that the situation has still not reached a resolution; according to Cavazzuti, things are still unresolved. “There is no news at the moment,” he said today. “I think there will probably be a decision before Christmas.”

In the meantime, preparations for the Giro d’Italia will continue without the man who has been the public face of the race since 2011.

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